China’s Q1 GDP grows 5.3% y/y, well above forecast

By Thomson Reuters Apr 15, 2024 | 9:11 PM

BEIJING (Reuters) – China’s economy grew 5.3% in the first quarter year-on-year, official data showed on Tuesday, comfortably beating analysts’ expectations, a welcome sign for policymakers as they try to shore up demand and confidence in the face of a protracted property crisis.

Analysts polled by Reuters had expected first-quarter gross domestic product (GDP) to expand 4.6% from a year earlier, compared to 5.2% in the previous three months.

The government is aiming for economic growth of around 5.0% for 2024, a target that many analysts believe is ambitious and may require more stimulus.

On a quarter-by-quarter basis, GDP grew 1.6% in January-March, above expectations for a 1.4% rise and compared with a revised 1.2% gain in the previous quarter.

Policymakers are ramping up support for the economy, which has struggled to mount a strong and sustainable post-COVID bounce, burdened by the property downturn, mounting local government debts and weak private-sector spending.

(Reporting by Joe Cash and Kevin Yao; Editing by Shri Navaratnam and Tom Hogue)